Well, that was fast. Magic Johnson is officially in charge of the Los Angeles Lakers.
Recently, Lakers President Jeanie Buss brought Magic on as an advisor to the team. Many, including myself, questioned the validity of the move and how much say Johnson would have on the franchise’s direction. However, Johnson was vocal from the beginning about wanting to be able to ‘Call the shots’ for his former team.
It didn’t take long, and that’s exactly what happened. Earlier today, Buss announced that Magic had been named the head of basketball operations for the Lakers. General manager Mitch Kupchak and brother Jim Buss were relieved of all their duties effective immediately. Thereafter, President Jeanie Buss released a statement on the decision:
“I took these actions today to achieve one goal: Everyone associated with the Lakers will now be pulling in the same direction, the direction established by Earvin and myself. We are determined to get back to competing to win NBA championships again.”
Although it didn’t seem likely Johnson would get to call the shots so soon, Jeanie Buss made a decision to move forward. Only time will tell if it was a good decision with how well Johnson operates in his new role, but it was definitely time for a big change for L.A.
The reason for change…
2016-2017: 19-39 currently
— LAKERFANATICS (@LAKERFANATICS) February 21, 2017
In an interview with Spectrum SportsNet, Johnson said, “It’s not about the last couple of weeks. It’s about the last few years” when asked about the reason for the firings. He also said that he is already looking for a new GM for the team. Although Magic wouldn’t name names, Rob Pelinka, a successful agent is one that has been rumored thus far.
If Lakers hire Rob Pelinka, he would be the next in line of talented agent turned GM. Pelinka represents Kobe, James Harden & several others pic.twitter.com/armDdRkSUf
— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpearsESPN) February 21, 2017
The Lakers’ organization can expect more changes to come soon, but one thing is for sure, Johnson seems to be happy with the young talent on the team and believes head coach Luke Walton was ‘The right pick’. The consensus is that rebuilding the Lakers won’t be a quick fix. Instead, it will be a long-term, wait and see process.